Online poker strategy is largely the same as its offline counterpart is, meaning that you still have to account for things like pot odds, you still try to bluff and your position at the table is still taken into account. There are differences of course, with the online games being faster than regular ones and with visual cues missing entirely.
Using pot odds
Poker strategy often relies on pot odds to give the player a way of figuring out whether to remain in the pot. An example would be having to call with $20 in order to get a chance at a $100 pot. In this example we have 5 to 1 pot odds. The odds of getting that hand need to be better than 5 to 1, in order for the hand to be pursued. While for that exact hand it might not bring you a win even with better odds in the long run that should give you a chance to make a profit, as long as you apply them correctly. Learning how to calculate the odds of you winning the current hand is one skill that you will need to learn if you want to be successful at poker.
While you don’t get to look the other player in the eye and see him squirm when he’s bluffing (or get any other kind of visual cue that he might offer), you can still bluff in online poker games. There isn’t really that much bluffing going on in online poker as the TV might make you believe, but it’s something you should master and learn how to use.
The position of the player at the table needs to be part of the strategy as well. It can influence the decisions you make and how good of a hand you need in order to go forward. The poker player that is in the last position has the best information on what’s going on at the table and can typically go forward even with a hand that is not as strong. The earlier the position they’re in, the better the hand must be.
Using the raise and call as part of the strategy
The raise can be part of the your strategy, just like the call would be. When you have a good hand it makes sense to raise in certain situations, either to get extra money in the current pot or to find out what players have good hands. You can use the raise to bluff and hopefully steal the pot, even during the first betting round if the others don’t have much.
Calling is also part of a player’s strategy, used either to see the other cards that follow, to make sure a re-raise is not made or to simply hide that he has a good hand and to make sure the others don’t figure that out too early. A call can make the other players feel more confident about their hand, getting them to raise and increase the size of the pot.